It wasn‘t long ago that the name Melody Gardot was unfamiliar to me. I came across her jazz by coincidence, as usually as these things go, while browsing Amazon for new music.  Few minutes sufficed for her music to absorb me. Her cool but nevertheless warm bossa nova inspired voice, promised excitement with the lightness of new jazz. What captured me most though, was Melody‘s unusually intimate style of singing. As if with every word she sang, she wanted to say that there was much much more to the notes and her feelings than meets the naked eye.

Wondering about her French sounding name, I discovered that Melody Gardot was born in New Jersey in 1985. As a 19-year-old, she was involved in a traffic accident that left its toll on the young woman‘s body. One and a half years took to recover, but heeling took much longer. Due to damaged hearing, sight and walk, Melody became sensitive to light, and could only listen to soft music. When learning how to walk again on a treadmill, Melody would listen to records of jazz artists like Stan Getz, with softer, more yielding compositions. The experience of having had a life threatening accident and an extensive recovery, Melody revived on her first two records ‘Worrisome Heart’ and ‘My One and Only Heart’.

Even though the 28-year-old suffers from post-accident trauma and requires the assistance of a cane to walk, Melody Gardot is a brave soul who chooses life over illness. The life she chooses she laments, and celebrates, in music. Melody Gardot is an example that physical limitations pose no limitation to follow your dreams, even if the dream is to be a singer when you can neither see, hear or walk without assistance.

The outstanding jazz performer Melody Gardot is touring Europe in 2013. Among the countries listed are Sweden, Denmark, Norway, France, UK, and Austria.

The sole concert in Austria will be performed on April 23, 2013 in Vienna (Stadthalle F).